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My favorite gluten-free whole grain

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Red Quinoa!
"Quinoa, pronounced "keen-wah," is actually not a grain at all, but a pseudocereal, which means it is the seed of a broadleaf plant, while true cereals are the seeds of grasses. The quinoa plant is a relative of beets, spinach and Swiss chard, but we treat its seeds as we would a grain, preparing and eating them in much the same way."

Quinoa has the highest protein content of any grain, and the protein it contains is complete, which means it includes all nine essential amino acids (perfect for vegetarians). It's got quite a bit of potassium, magnesium, manganese, copper, iron, B-vitamins, phosphorus, and zinc.

If you follow the GI/GL diet, the Glycemic Index of quinoa is 53, and the Glycemic load for 1/2 cup cooked quinoa is 9, making this a nice, slow-burning carbohydrate and a good source of fiber.

Plus, it's super tasty!!! This red variety's flavor is much more complex than the plain kind: it's nutty, sweet, savory, and filling. Honestly, I didn't care for quinoa before I tried this red kind; now it's my only quinoa in my pantry. I could eat it every day.

*Easy Recipe for Italian Seasoned Quinoa: Rinse quinoa well and drain. Add quinoa to saucepan with chicken stock (1 cup quinoa to 1.75 cup stock), and add a bit of diced onion, bell pepper, sliced cherry tomatoes, and italian seasoning. Cover. Bring to a boil, then turn down heat to low for 5-7 min, or until most of the moisture has been absorbed. Turn off heat, and let rest, covered, for 5 min. Before serving, fluff with a fork and drizzle with a little extra virgin olive oil. It reheats well, so you can use it as a side dish all week long.

Eden Red Quinoa on Amazon:
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